Tanko Yakasai, a member of Arewa Consultative Forum, has accused the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari of contributing to the challenges bedevilling the Almajiri system of education in northern Nigeria.
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Speaking in an interview, the elder statesman alleged that the Buhari administration failed to build on the achievements recorded by the previous government of Goodluck Jonathan in providing infrastructure to house the Almajiri students.
Reacting to issues recently raised by the Emir of Kano, Muhammadu Sanusi II, concerning the development of Northern Nigeria and linkage to education, Yakasai said the present Federal Government are yet to develop plans to tackle the situation, particularly with regards to street begging.
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“Goodluck Jonathan who was not a northerner considered the Almajiri problem a Nigerian problem; even though the practice is predominantly in the North,” Yakasai told the Punch.
“He took practical steps to find a lasting solution to this problem.
“He built and equipped schools where these children who are roaming the streets will be housed and given Western and Islamic education to make them useful to themselves and society.
“What has happened to this initiative? We now have a northerner as President and a northerner as Minister of Education, have they even considered fine-tuning this initiative if they find the previous attempt defective?”
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The elder statesman said it is time for the Federal Government and elites in the northern region to make necessary adjustments to the Almajiri system of education and stop the practice of alms begging by the children.
“We must begin to tell ourselves the truth. Times are changing, we as a people must make the necessary adjustments to change with the times.
“It is not enough to say we have a problem; we must bring solutions and be prepared to take steps to implement these solutions when they are brought forward,” he said.